Ladder Yards

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by Scott Chapin, Jul 4, 2005.

  1. Scott Chapin

    Scott Chapin New Member

    I am having a problems designing a ladder yard. When starting with a turnout off the main line, say a lefthand turnout, all the others beg to be righthand. This seems to me to create a nasty reverse curve. One that you can pull cars through, but not push them through.

    Where can I get some decent information on creating double ended ladder yards?


  2. N Gauger

    N Gauger 1:20.3 Train Addict

    Welcome aboard Scott!! :D

    I googled a railroad yard search for images: yard&btnG=Search&svnum=10&hl=en&lr=

    but in the meantime, I'm guessing you mean - 2 switches right together causing the "dreaded" S curve :(

    If you put a length of straight in betwen the 2 switches it'll help.

    Also - you mention "Double ended" if the yard is double ended you would very seldom have to reverse through the "S".

    Here's a G scale Yard I took at a show... It's a good Ladder View:

    Notice the "S" (just above) in the lower pic.... :)
  3. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

    Scott, The S curve you get in a ladder such as you descibe usually doesn't present a problem with derailments. Particularly if you use # 6 turnouts. Atlas snaptrack switches used in conjunction with truck mounted couplers may cause a problem when being pushed thru, but it isn't the s so much as the tight turnout and truck mounted couplers. The reason an S curve in this situation is, for all intnts and purposes, exempt ftom the taboo of S curves, is that switching speeds are slow. S curves created by crossovers on double track mains, even with # 6's, also require speed restrictions (on the prototype too!)

  4. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

    have used #4's on yard ladders because of space limitations and have had no problems using body mounted couplers and proper car weights
  5. Scott Chapin

    Scott Chapin New Member

    Thanks guys,

    My first go at it was with Atlas no. 6 turnouts (snap track) and truck mounted couplers, both rapido couplers and Micro-Trains. I would have expected body mounted couplers to be more problematic, since they swing away from the track's center line to a greater degree. Wouldn't this buckling pick the trucks up off the rails?

    I was under the impression that body mounted couplers require larger turning radii.

  6. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

    Hi Scott
    This is one solution I came across to help out in yards.
    All of the switches, with the exception of the mainline in red and the A/D in darker blue are #4 Atlas Customline switches.

    Having some problems uploading the image.

    Attached Files:

  7. Scott Chapin

    Scott Chapin New Member

    Hi Clark,

    Is there a link here? Otherwise, I'm not sure what you mean with the colors. Also, I'm not sure with the meaning of A/D. Ooops! Spoke too soon. The plans are there now!

  8. Tileguy

    Tileguy Member

    Atlas customline or peco electrofrogs will give you a more functional ladder arrangement than Atlas insulfrogs.they are smoother ot seems for ladder arrangements.
    Clarks stub ended example above could also be turned into a through yard with the same lead in arrangement reversed.the above example would be a better choice if Atlas insulfrogs are used IMHO.
    Insulfrogs however are a poor choice for any yard arrangement with perhaps the exception of a staging yard where switching will not be done.
  9. belg

    belg Member

    Tileguy, I think somewhere in your response you went wrong, in one sentence you say don't use insulfrog and then you say to use them. I think you meant to say customline here right? Or am I reading it wrong???? Also lets say I have access to only atlas what would be the best to use for code 100 track?? Pat
    "a better choice if Atlas insulfrogs are used IMHO"
  10. SAL Comet

    SAL Comet Member

    Ha Scott, welcome to The Gauge. A/D stands for arival and departure. Usually the A/D track is between the main and the yard ladder.

    I have two #4 atlas turnouts as crossovers and into a yard with the only derail problems I've had is with hoppers that aren't up to weight.
  11. Scott Chapin

    Scott Chapin New Member

    I don't think so. Tileguy implied that insulfrogs would work on Clark's yard, because there would not be a lot of low speed motive power in that style of yard.

    Parking locomotives on insulfrogs can be a frustrating experience, so heavy switching areas need constant contact with juice.

    That's my take on it anyway.

  12. Scott Chapin

    Scott Chapin New Member

    Hey Scott,

    Thanks, after all these years, I don't know why I've never picked up on that!
  13. Tileguy

    Tileguy Member

    Scott, at least you understood what i said, and thats what counts.

    Pat, i can see where it was confusing.I'm not a big insulfrog fan and ive had my share of them causing me to do modifications on locomotives,wiring for tender pickup etc.

    If its a first or second layout and is being built on a tight budget, there are ways to use insulfrogs to save some money.(particularly with the new locomotives)But, for an experienced modeler building a layout for operations,insulfrogs should only be used where they cant be seen and wont interfere with smooth operating.

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